Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Silent Thunder

I was listening to National Steel by Colin James the other night and a remarkable think happened: I got totally caught up in the driving beat. Foot tapping, knee bouncing, head bobbing ...

Not so unusual for a good song with a driving beat? Here's the thing: it happened without drums! It's an acoustic number. The drums enter late and build slowly - way after I'd been swept into the song. The guitar is mostly off the beat, in a Hooker boogie sort of way.

So what's going on? My brain, my something, decided the beat was there even though it wasn't. I supplied it in my head. And it was powerful.

How does that work? Cultural conditioning? Memory? Association? Emotion?

Did Colin James intend me to react that way or did I do it myself?

I don't have the scientific knowledge to understand what part(s) of my brain or what triggers in my electro-chemical system were in play. All I know is that I was hearing - no, feeling - something that wasn't there.

But it was, and that's magic.

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